Platform: 2020
Designed by James Brook for Edinburgh Art Festival, 2020

Booklet  | 210 x 165 mm | 16 pages
Printed by Allander, Edinburgh, on Edixion Offset 170 gsm

A booklet that I designed for Platform, Edinburgh Art Festival’s showcase for Scotland based artists at the beginning of their careers. Platform is usually presented in August, but this year’s festival was cancelled because of the Covid pandemic and Platform was postponed until the end of October: it ran from 31 October to 29 November at the City Art Centre, Edinburgh. Selected from an open call by artist Ruth Ewan, and curator, Sophia Hao (Cooper Gallery, Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art & Design), four artists based in Scotland – Rabindranath A Bhose, Mark Bleakley, Rhona Jack and Susannah Stark – were supported to create new work for this group show.

Last year, the Art Festival invited me to refresh the Platform identity (which I had originally developed in 2015) to create a new look that draws on elements of the previous designs while offering a fresh new take that highlights the artists’ images. For previous editions of Platform, an 8 page folded leaflet was the main design focus; this year, I was asked to expand the identity to include a 16 page booklet; exhibition graphics, signage and labels; print advertisements; digital advertisements; and a series of posters. 

The cover design includes two circles (taken from the colon that punctuates Platform: 2020) with imagery selected from one of the four artists – in this instance, the work of Mark Bleakley, a black and white video still that I overlaid with colour. I have used two typefaces, Freight Sans Pro and Adelle Sans, selected for their character and readability, and I used different weights of Adelle Sans to create a logo that is used throughout all the material that I have designed. 

Sorcha Carey, Director, Edinburgh Art Festival: We have worked with James Brook on a number of different festival design projects since 2014, ranging from substantial exhibition catalogues, smaller interpretation booklets and leaflets, through to devising bespoke identities for discrete projects and initiatives. He has a wealth of knowledge of typography, graphic design, print and book production, is incredibly thoughtful and considered in his approach, and always responds to a brief with creativity and rigour in equal measure. I can’t recommend him highly enough. 

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